Council approves multiple contracts, resolutions: Bermuda Run receives Davie County Sheriff’s Office updates from JD Hartman

Published 12:10 am Thursday, May 23, 2024

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BERMUDA RUN — While Manager Andrew Meadwell continues to put the finishing touches on the 2023-24 budget, the Bermuda Run Town Council moved forward with approval of a couple important contracts and other resolutions in last Tuesday night’s meeting.

In the first of two proposed action items, the council voted to allow the town manager and town attorney to negotiate and executive a five-year contract with Republic Services for solid waste and recycling services.

Meadwell said that the town opted to go with Republic Services as the lowest responsible bidder with a 15 percent increase from the current contract, but the agreement is five years instead of three and provides expanded service routes for Kinderton Village in addition to trash pickup services for local events.

Mayor Mike Brannon added that solid waste and recycling is probably one of the top three expenses “in terms of large spend in the town, so you think about our overall budget, I call that the big rocks of what we have.” 

That was followed by the approval of an interlocal agreement with Davie County for shared services including tax collection and billing but excluding planning and zoning. 

Later in the meeting, the council voted to allow the town manager and town attorney to negotiate and executive a planning administration services agreement with Benchmark, which  has provided services for the town in the past.

With the interlocal pact involving the county expiring June 30, 2024, Meadwell said that staff feels like it’s probably best to move those services in-house and return to using Benchmark.

“Benchmark has a long relationship with the Town of Bermuda Run,” he said. “They worked in this capacity in previous years. They just completed our Comprehensive Plan. They are the organization that we typically turn to for very specific planning-related items.”

Brannon said that Benchmark is also very widely employed across the state and beyond.

“So not only do we leverage them for multiple different services,” he said, “but they come to the table with a breath of knowledge around other municipalities with information that we simply wouldn’t have.”

Furthermore, the council approved resolutions of approval for sewer and stormwater engineering services with Hazen & Sawyer, a transportation and stormwater engineering agreement with Wetherill Engineering Inc., and stormwater engineering services with LJB Inc.

“These are all resolutions of approval for on-call engineering services,” Meadwell said. “As many of you know, our current engineer, John Gray, is slowly trying to retire. He continues to answer the call, but I do know that John is stepping aside. So instead of us going with a full-service type engineering firm that covers all these bases, it’s really prudent for us to have flexibility and deciding who that engineer will be to cover certain aspects.”

Regarding the budget, Meadwell said that staff is “feverishly working” on it and the process is very time-consuming. 

“Our intent is to have this budget presentation to the council at the agenda meeting (on May 28) with the intent to have a public hearing on June 11 at the next council meeting,” he said.

Prior to the business portion of the meeting, Sheriff JD Hartman provided an update on the Davie County Sheriff’s Office, including lots of interesting facts, figures and tidbits:

  • The sheriff’s office has 122 full-time employees and 23 part-time employees.
  • The sheriff’s office operates as three units – Enforcement Services (by far the largest), Detention Services and Animal Services.
  • Hartman said that in Bermuda Run during the first quarter (January through March), there were 547 CAD (Computer Aided Dispatch) activities that the sheriff’s office responded to, and the actual number of crime reports was only 51. “That’s not a bad average,” Hartman said. “That’s a actually a pretty safe community.”
  • In the first quarter in Bermuda Run, there were 20 drug crimes (Hartman said that was higher than usual because there was a targeted effort during that period) and 10 fraud violations.
  • Fun fact: Hartman said that although everyone thinks Friday and Saturday nights are the busiest times, they’re not. The busiest times, he said, are Tuesday through Thursday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. countywide.

In other highlights from last Tuesday night’s meeting, the council:

  • Heard from Meadwell regarding his disappointment of receiving “a lack of bids” on The Flags at Blue Heron Trail project (no bids) and street paving (one bid). “So both of those will go out for a rebid,” he said. “Especially with the paving project, that just really puts us further behind in the paving season.”
  • Heard from Brannon on the progress status of the Comprehensive Plan, stating that 35 out of 40 action items have noted progress and adding that the town will provide another update at this time this year.  
  • Heard from Brannon in his mayor comments, saying that May has been a success so far with events including the NCAA Women’s Regional Golf Tournament at Bermuda Run Country Club and the car show. Upcoming is the first free concert of the season coming to Town Square on Saturday (May 25) at 7 p.m. with The TAMS performing beach music along with a mix of smooth soul and R&B.